Skip to main content

Intel Core i9-7960X Review: Skylake-X At 16 Cores

Grand Theft Auto V, Hitman & Shadow of Mordor

Grand Theft Auto V

Image 1 of 6

Image 2 of 6

Image 3 of 6

Image 4 of 6

Image 5 of 6

Image 6 of 6

Grand Theft Auto V tends to perform best on Intel CPUs, and that pattern continues with our Core i9-7960X benchmarks, which outperforms the -7900X at stock and overclocked settings (though the delta between them is tiny at our highest overclocks).

Core i7-7700K fares well at its stock settings, but only slightly beats the stock Core i9-7960X (97.7 FPS) after an aggressive tuning session.

Hitman

Image 1 of 6

Image 2 of 6

Image 3 of 6

Image 4 of 6

Image 5 of 6

Image 6 of 6

Hitman scales well with additional processing resources, once again giving the -7960X a quantifiable advantage.

Shadow of Mordor

Image 1 of 6

Image 2 of 6

Image 3 of 6

Image 4 of 6

Image 5 of 6

Image 6 of 6

Shadow of Mordor is lightly threaded, which punishes the Core i9-7960X's low base frequency. We verified that this CPU sporadically boosts to 4.5 GHz during the test, but the speed-ups are so brief that they do little to improve our frame rate measurements. Even tuning doesn't help much. Notably, Intel's latest lags the overclocked -7900X by more than 5 FPS on average.


MORE: Best CPUs


MORE: Intel & AMD Processor Hierarchy


MORE: All CPUs Content

  • lxd170
    Intel is the fastest when $ is no object, BUT AMD 1950 is a win for a average Joe.
    Reply
  • mdd1963
    Please add yet another $500 for exotic liquid cooling....; well done, intel...
    Reply
  • David_693
    I think there is something missing here: 'Similar to the other Skylake-X CPUs, the -7960X supports up to DDR4-2666 memory.'
    Reply
  • David_693
    Also noted that one of the test systems uses an i5-7500k not i7
    Reply
  • David_693
    Well, for now, my i7-7700k is no slouch, can't wait to see what the i7-8700K's will be able to do. No rush to upgrade yet as I've only had the 7700k since March. Thanks to AMD for pushing Intel to produce better options.
    Reply
  • klipschkiller
    Really, Intel, is this a joke? Why release a chip that requires water cooling, have bad thermals and power consumption to previous AMD's bulldozer.
    Reply
  • hannibal
    Well, it is good for competition that AMD have cooler and better behaving product this time compared to Intel. It forces Intel to do better next time!
    Go AMD go! And keep Intel in its toes! Better products, better prices (?) to the customers. I hope that Intel is forced to reduce the pricing...
    Reply
  • zippyzion
    That is a supremely powerful chip... but, man... at what cost? I give a nod to the speed and power, but it is anything but practical. It isn't even that much faster than the competition in most tests, and a good deal of that competition comes from Intel themselves. It is really a case of, "why bother?". I'd suggest just getting the 7900 or the 1950 if you are looking at this segment. Why spend so much more for so little extra?
    Reply
  • berezini.2013
    "Hail to the king baby"
    Reply
  • phobicsq
    Intel needs to stop using paste and do it right. It's beyond comprehension that they charge a lot more and and yet AMD charges less and does it right.
    Reply